Gender History: Ancient and Medieval Europe

Fall Open
Class Standing
Stacey Davis

This program covers the history of gender and sexuality in Western Europe during the ancient, medieval and early modern periods, from roughly 400 B.C.E. to 1650 A.D. Emphasis is on understanding shifting gender roles in light of larger socio-cultural, political, economic, legal and religious histories, especially in terms of the transition from pre-Christian society to medieval Christianity, the impact of feudalism, the advent of the printing press and the spread of literacy, the Protestant Reformation and the Wars of Religion. We will focus on common women and men, like artisans, soldiers, peasants, and nuns. Their daily experiences in their families and communities as they worked, loved, prayed, and played will be contrasted with gendered expectations for elites and portrayals of gender in literature, religious texts, and art. We will study historical gendered experiences and realities that fell outside modern definitions of the gender binary. Most readings focus on Ancient Greece and Rome, medieval France and the British Isles, and the German states and the Dutch Republic during the Reformation. Reading and writing assignments are extensive - expect at least 200 pages of reading each week; you will practice text analysis, seminar skills, and academic essay writing. This "Entry" program will provide a solid foundation in the humanities for students wishing to follow the Humanities: Culture, Text, and Language in World Societies Path.

This program incorporates Greener Foundations for new first year students. Greener Foundations is Evergreen’s in-person 2-quarter introductory student success course, which provides all first-year students with the skills and knowledge they need to thrive at Evergreen. First-year students who register for 14 credits in this program will be placed into Greener Foundations for an additional 2 credits, totaling 16 credits. Once first-year students have been placed into Greener Foundations, they will receive an email confirming their registration status. Sophomore students, as well as returning frosh who have already completed Greener Foundations, will register for 14 credits only.


Course Reference Numbers

So (14): 10019
Fr (14): 10020

Academic Details

history, gender studies, humanities, and social sciences.



In Person (F)

See definition of Hybrid, Remote, and In-Person instruction

Schedule Details
SEM 2 D3109 - Seminar